Subject: UNMIT Daily Media Review 20 - 22 January 2007

[Poster's note: Repeats of international articles already sent out to the east-timor list ( have been removed.]

Saturday 20, Monday 22 January 2007



National Media Reports

Letter To Major Alfredo From Cuban Doctor

A claimed Cuban military doctor called Rodriguez Paralta has allegedly written to Major Alfredo Reinado saying he worked in Timor-Leste as a doctor and wants to reveal what members of the government have done. Paralto said he also disagrees with people misusing Fidel Castro and Che Guevarra’s name for their political interests. The claimed Cuban Captain doctor stated in a letter to Major Alfredo Reinado that the politics of Cuba are slowly reaching Timor-Leste and he is aware that some members of the government have invested money in tourism and hotels in Havana. He appealed to the Timorese people to dismantle the current government and ask all the Timorese medicine students in Cuba to return in order for Timor-Leste to live in peace and stability. He stressed that the students are also taking revolutionaries and other courses, which might contribute to the destabilization of the country in the future. A copy of the letter, was reprinted [copy not clear] and published on Saturday’s edition of Timor Post and it is reported to be writing in Spanish language, dated 13 December 2006.

In the Monday edition of STL Major Alfredo reportedly said the Cuban doctor had informed him that doctors from Cuba were working to expand their communist ideology.

Meanwhile the Cuban Embassy in Timor-Leste through the Coordinator of the Cuban Doctors Brigade, Dr. Francisco Medina Feijoo has denied there is a Cuban doctor in Timor-Leste with such a name. Feijoo affirmed that anyone in doubt could verify the list of all the names of the Cuban doctors currently working in the Ministry of Health. He further said that the Cubans doctors are working in Timor-Leste as well as other parts of the world as volunteers with dedication and professional ethics. In Timor-Leste they have provided medical assistance to more than 800,000 people, are providing training and there are doctors stationed in 65 sub-districts where there is no access to electricity and communications.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Health, Rui Araújo says the letter is false and that there is no Cuban doctor in the country named Rodriguez Paralta.

On the dispute of the authenticity of the letter, Major Alfredo Reinado said during a press conference on Friday that the Cuban Military Captain Rodrigues Paralta is prepared to testify in relation to the letter. According to Reinado, Paralta has sought political asylum in the USA for being outspoken in relation to Timor-Leste in adopting politics similar to that of Cuban. (TP, DN, STL)

Xanana’s Wishes Must Be Respected: Fernandes

Deputy speaker of the Parliament, Jacob Fernades and MP Alexandre Corte Real (UDT) said President Xanana’s wishes not to run for the second term in the office must be respected, despite being a charismatic and well-known figure among the people. Fernandes said Francisco Guterres, “Lu-Olo” deservers to bet the next President of the Republic. (TP)

Three Youths Injured During Disturbances

It is reported that three youths were injured during disturbances last Thursday evening in the area of Tuanalaran and Matadouro. Two youths, one with the initial IDS were shot with an automatic long rifle by an unknown group and the other was hit by a sling shot. The three were all injured in the leg. According to IDS, the person who shot them with the rifle is a former member of UIR. On Monday TP reported that violences and killings continued in the area of Perumnas, Matadouro, Tuanalaran, Ailoklaran and Bairopité by rival groups. A member of PNTL was killed and a youth called João died from gunshots. UNPol responded to the situation but has not identified the groups carrying illegal weapons or detain those responsible for the killings. Military and political analyst, Julio Tomas Pinto said the retraction of all weapons are now in the hands of UNPol, adding that the security situation in the country under the UN must change or face being accused of being behind the problems. Pinto is of the opinion the UN must be more active in preventing the violence that has occurred in the past week between rival groups which has left many people seriously injured from guns, rama ambons [sling shots] and machetes. (TP)

Resolve The Case of 28 April Before Catching Me: Alfredo

Alfredo Reinado said he would not come to Dili to answer questions about why he fled prison. But he is prepared to come and talk about the case of 23 May with the condition that the case of 28 April must first be resolved. Reinado stressed that he would defend himself from anyone trying to arrest him and hoped it would not happen without going through the justice process. Major Alfredo says he supports the plans of the MUNJ protest in relation to the current justice in Timor-Leste. In a press conference also held on Friday, MUNJ calls on the Public Ministry to immediately release Abilio Mesquita and Oan Kiak as their preventive detention had expired. The group calls on the speed process to members of F-FDTL and PNTL currently in preventive detention to avoid the same experience as Mesquita and Oan Kiak. MUNJ demands the Public Ministry to urgently detain Mari Alkatiri and Rogerio Lobato in a reclusive preventive detention and rejects any suggestion or plans to capture Major Alfredo Reinado. MUNJ is strongly against UNMIT’s and the government plans to make disappear the justice in Timor-Leste. The group would like to remind the Australian and New Zealand troops to defend the people and not groups of interest, especially the ones in charge of the government, adding that if theses demands are not met, MUNJ would put into actions through the popular actions. (TP)

Elections Calendar

Based on the electoral decree law, the government plans to hold elections in the month of April and before May 20, said the Deputy Minister of State, Valentim Ximenes, adding the final decision would be from the President of the Republic. He said the electoral campaign would start as soon as the dates are announced. Ximenes also informed that the government has allocated a total of US$510,000 for political parties campaign and for the presidential candidates, noting that each presidential candidate is entitled to US$10,000. He said there are also bilateral subsidies, which will be managed by the UNDP with a total of US$677,050, adding to an overall total of US$1, 187 for the electoral campaign. Speaking during a visit to the IDPs camp in Metinaro to celebrate Christmas and the New Year, Ramos-Horta said it is imperative for the elections, to proceed in a stable and peaceful manner in order for the people to elect the president and the political party they want to govern this nation. (DN, TP)

Lobato Court Proceedings Continue

The trial of former Minister of Interior, Rogerio Lobato continues today in Dili at the Court of Appeal with Paulo Martins, former PNTL Commander General testifying. Today is the fifth hearing. According to Diario Nacional various people have testified and their statements are more or less the same and that they acted under the directive of the then Minister of Interior, Rogerio Lobato to distribute and obtain guns from civilians. (DN, TP)

Border Demarcation Almost Complete

The border demarcation between Indonesia and Timor-Leste is still not complete as the people living along both sides of the borders are relatives and have used the land for farming. According to the Indonesia Ambassador to Timor-Leste, Ahmed Bey Sofwan the demarcation would have been completed by now but the governments of Timor-Leste and Indonesia do not want to force the people out of the lands from the demarcation lines. Senior Indonesian Liaison Officer, Colonel Minton Mariaty has completed her mission in Timor-Leste and is being replaced by Colonel Sofyan Lubis. During the handover ceremony in the Embassy residence, Ambassador Sofwan said the new officer will work together with PNTL and UNPOL to prevent trans-national crimes. Minton Mariaty said during her time in Timor-Leste she worked closely with PNTL resulting in one PNTL officer presently studying in Indonesia on leadership and training 100 PNTL officers in traffic, investigation and intelligence in 2005. She said the leadership training for PNTL for 2006 was cancelled due to the crisis. Timor-Leste Minister of Foreign Affairs, José Luis Guterres said the delay in the demarcation is due to technical impediment but both governments are determined to complete the negotiation to avoid future problems. (DN, STL)

Commission Responsible For Changes: Salsinha

Gastão Salsinha, the ‘petitioners’ spokesperson said if the Notable Commission is not releasing the result of the investigation in relation to the petitioners, they will be creating a new situation in the country. Salsinha reiterated that he represents 591 petitioners who have demanded the Commission to release the result sooner or later as they all want to contribute to the stability and peace in the country in order for the people to live in a peaceful environment. He says the group is trying to understand the delay of the release of the report. Salsinha Gastão, together with Labadain, Railos and Alfredo Reinado were together during a press conference held in Aifu, Ermera District on Friday (19/1) where Alfredo Reinado stated that if the petitioners problem is not resolved before the elections it is likely there might not be elections. (STL)

RTTL news headlines

Prime Minister meets Bishop Ricardo

Prime Minister Ramos-Horta and the Bishop of Dili Diocese met and discussed possible candidates for the next presidential election on Friday, 19 January 2007. Mr. Horta mentioned Mario Carrascalão and Brigadier-General Taur Matan Ruak as the possible candidates for the up-coming presidential elections. Bishop Ricardo added that since Mr. Xanana does not want to re-candidate himself a suitable person is required for this high position of the country.

MUNJ calls on Prosecutor General not to capture Major Renado

The National United Movement for Justice has called upon the Persecutor-General Longuinos Montero to refrain from trying to arrest Major Alfredo Reinado. At a press conference, the spokesperson of MUNJ (Muvimento Unidade National ba Justicia) has demanded the office of the Prosecutor-General to arrest the former Prime Minister Mari Alkatiri and the former Minister of Interior Rogerio Lobato and remand them both in preventive detention. They stressed that if the Prosecutor-General will not arrest Mr. Alkatiri and Lobato then the people have to hold popular justice against these two former leaders.

Deputy of PG rejects rumors of issued an arrest warant to capture Major Renado

Deputy Persecutor-General, Ivo Valentino has rejected rumors that the Office of the Prosecutor-General had issued an arrest warrant for Major Alfredo Reinado. Mr. Valentino said those people creating these type of rumours are the ones creating trouble and confusion among the people in the country. He stressed that any arrest must be based on the penal code and constitution of RDTL. Ivo Valentino also said that Major Alfredo has good intentions to improve the judicial system of this country.

Law for Defense and Security

President of Commission B of the National Parliament, Faustino da Costa said that the bill for defense and security had been approved at the Commission level and forwarded to the Speaker of the Parliament. A date would be set in the parliamentary session for approval of the document and presented to the President of the Republic to promulgate. A public audience and consultation meeting with Brigadier-General Taur is being scheduled for further debate on the bill before final approval.

International Media Reports

Renewed Violence In East Timor 5:36 pm, 22 Jan 2007

Renewed violence has broken out in East Timor, leading to the deaths of two young people in a dispute between rival martial arts groups.

Witnesses say the youths, one of whom was a member of the national police, were killed as they walked home from church.

Sporadic violence has also broken out in other areas including the United Nations mission in Caicoli.

The spokesperson for the UN mission in Dili, Alison Cooper, told Radio New Zealand it has been relatively calm since the violent clashes in April and May last year.

She says the number of police staff in Dili is adequate to control the renewed violence.

© NewsRoom 2007

East Timor crisis The East Timorese government is appealing for $20 million in aid to avoid a major food crisis in a nation with an already high rate of malnutrition.

International organisations say a food shortage could be disastrous for thousands of people, still living in refuge camps after last year's surge in violence.

Unicef spokesperson Shui Meng Ng says given the increasing dry conditions throughout the country, a food crisis is looming since farmers are unable to provide stock.

Sky News anchor John Gatfield visited the nation recently and discovered up to 25,000 people were still living in makeshift tent camps.

He also discovered that out of 1000 babies, 88 will die in the first year of life and 125 won't make it to their fifth birthday.

Meanwhile there are reports another two young people have been hacked to death as warfare between rival gangs in East Timor continues, with one of the victims reported to be a member of the national police. (SKY News Online)

Press Releases


Radio Timor-Leste (RTL) Suara Timor Lorosae (STL) Diario Tempo (DT) Diario Nacional Seminario Lia Foun (LF) Televisaun Timor-Leste [TVTL]


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